2023 Joliet SuperMotocross | Race Report & Results
The SuperMotocross Championship continued with the second race of the combined mega series, the 2023 Joliet SuperMotocross. A massive track was laid out on the flat infield and banked first turn of Chicagoland Speedway, which encouraged riders to hold the throttle on a little long than usual during the two 20-minutes plus one lap motos.
250 Main One
The first main event of the night was off and Haiden Deegan was off to the early lead after just edging out Hunter Lawrence into the first corner. Tom Vialle then quickly advanced past Hunter to claim second place, however, Hunter fought back as Jo Shimoda lurked behind. Meanwhile, Justin Cooper was dead last after some troubles in the first corner with Ryder DiFrancesco.
Hunter Lawrence re-passed Vialle for second place as they worked up the embankment, while Haiden Deegan continued to lead. Fastest qualifier Rj Hampshire made the pass on Shimoda to take over fourth place before the end of the opening lap. A few laps later, Jo Shimoda fired back and passed Hampshire to take over fourth place for the time being.
While giving chase to Deegan, Hunter Lawrence blew an outside rut in a sand corner and went off course momentarily. Despite the mistake, Hunter continued to pressure Haiden Deegan for the lead, as the duo began to break away from Vialle and the rest of the field. After laying down a fast lap, Hunter was on Haiden’s rear wheel just before Deegan lost traction and was forced to roll the finish line. That mistake by Haiden allowed Hunter Lawrence to jump right into the race lead.
Just behind, Jo Shimoda was challenging Tom Vialle for third place and the pair was catching Deegan while doing so. Jo Shimoda was working some outsides to pull alongside Vialle, but he was unable to make the pass until he blitzed to the inside of Vialle just before the finish line. Shimoda now held third place and switched his focus to Haiden Deegan, who was just in front of him.
While pressuring Haiden Deegan, Jo Shimoda ran the fastest laps on track. Jo then made the pass for second place after taking an outside line and doubling into the rollers, while Haiden was inside. Jo Shimoda then gave chase to Hunter Lawrence but ran out of time before he could make a pass. Hunter Lawrence crossed the finish line just ahead of Shimoda to claim the win in main event one.
250 Main Two
The second 250 moto was off as Justin Cooper led the field out of the first corner with Jo Shimoda in tail. Hunter Lawrence shuffled back to third place off the start but made a quick aggressive move on Shimoda for second. However, Jo fired right back and passed Hunter to retake second place. Ryder DiFrancesco trailed in fourth place, but he had Haiden Deegan just behind.
Ryder then dove inside of Hunter Lawrence and nearly made the pass for third place. Just ahead, Jo Shimoda began to pressure Justin Cooper for the race lead, as he looked inside. Jo pulled alongside Justin a few times, but J-Coop worked to fend the challenges off. Jo Shimoda rocketed to the inside of Justin before the finish line and took the race lead.
In the meantime, Haiden Deegan made the pass on DiFrancesco for fourth place and began his charge toward the front. Hunter Lawrence then made an aggressive move on Justin Cooper and dove inside, but blew his momentum doing so and wasn’t able to complete the pass. Hunter Lawrence found a line through the rollers and made the pass on Justin Cooper for second place.
Tom Vialle joined the battle, as he made the pass on Haiden Deegan. Up front, Jo Shimoda wasn’t far ahead, as Hunter Lawrence immediately began working on him after picking up second place. Tom Vialle continued to charge and was on Justin Cooper’s rear fender, pressuring for third place.
While pressuring Deegan for fifth place, Rj Hampshire nearly went down and jumped off track after cross-rutting. Both Tom Vialle and Haiden Deegan advanced past Justin Cooper in the matter of a lap to pick up third and fourth place. After being shuffled back, Ryder DiFrancesco was back in the fight and made passes on both Hampshire and Cooper.
While leading, Jo Shimoda began to look down at his machine in the air. Jo then handed the lead over to Hunter Lawrence as he appeared to be suffering from a mechanical issue. Tom Vialle then had his own issues, as he dropped from third place to last. That handed Haiden Deegan third place with just a few minutes left on the clock.
Rj Hampshire and Justin Cooper made their ways back past DiFrancesco to lock down fourth and fifth place. Maximus Vohland charged through the pack to then pass Justin Cooper for fifth place after a creative inside line. After a small gift late in moto two, Hunter Lawrence collected the win in the second moto to go 1-1 at Chicagoland Speedway.
450 Main One
The first 450 main of the night was underway as Jett Lawrence rocketed off to the early lead after Justin Barcia and Chase Sexton nearly tangle in the first two corners. Justin Barcia held the upper-hand on Sexton in the first few corners and took second place, but then Chase fired back a few sections later to take second and close on Lawrence.
Ken Roczen made the pass on Ferrandis on the second lap to take fourth place. While Chase Sexton continued to hunt down Jett Lawrence, Justin Barcia lurked in third. Jason Anderson had a mistake on the opening lap that placed him in the back of the pack. After a few laps, Ken Roczen caught Barcia and pulled alongside after scrubbing through the double jumps. Roczen then looked inside a few times before ultimately completing the pass for third place.
Up front, Jett Lawrence pulled out a three second lead over Chase Sexton. Just outside of the top-5, Aaron Plessinger made the pass on Cooper Webb for seventh place before going after Phil Nicoletti. It took a few laps, but Aaron ultimately passed Nicoletti in the same section he passed Webb. Cooper Webb then pulled up to Phil and pressured for seventh place.
With two laps to go, Aaron Plessinger had caught Ferrandis and was challenging for fifth place. On the final lap, Plessinger scrubbed past Ferrandis to take the position. Jett Lawrence crossed the finish line to take the victory in the first main event with a substantial lead over Sexton.
450 Main Two
As the final race of the night left the gate, Phil Nicoletti led the field out of the first corner with Justin Barcia in tail. Jett Lawrence and Chase Sexton made quick passes on Barcia but Justin then made his way back past Sexton. Ken Roczen came from fifth place into third after a few quick passes. Jett Lawrence then made the pass for the lead on Phil Nicoletti.
As Jett worked to check out, Ken Roczen made the pass on Phil after diving inside. Ken then immediately went after Jett Lawrence and the lead. Meanwhile, Chase Sexton was up to third place after passes on Barcia and Nicoletti. Justin Barcia then tucked the front-end in the sand and dropped back to 12th place.
Cooper Webb was up to fourth place after Justin Barcia’s fall, but his teammate Dylan Ferrandis was in tail. Back up front, Ken Roczen’s early sprint speed had calmed, allowing Jett Lawrence to work his way to a 2-second lead. A few laps later, Ferrandis and Anderson advanced past Cooper Webb.
Ken Roczen was back on the charge, as he was within a second of Jett Lawrence. Aaron Plessinger was again charging from behind and up to fourth place after passes on Webb, Anderson, and Ferrandis. With just a few minutes left on the clock, Ken Roczen clicked off a few fast laps and closed back in on Jett.
Jett Lawrence then waved Ken Roczen by at the top of the track, placing him back in second place. Jett then signaled over to his mechanic on that lap, alluding to a possible mechanical issue. Ken Roczen crossed the finish line to claim the second moto win ahead of Jett Lawrence. Jett Lawrence took the overall victory in Chicagoland Speedway with a 1-2 score.